Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Furnace Mountain - Fly the River

This group from Virginia is surprisingly unknown outside small groups of ardent lovers of bluegrass and traditional Appalachian music. It's surprising because they have the sort of talent and distinct sound that one would expect to garner national attention, if not by big labels then at least by specialized music programs like NPR's World Cafe and others. Probably the reason this band isn't more famous is that they don't pursue it. (They don't even have a page on Wikipedia, who doesn't have one of those these days?) They mostly stay in Virginia and surrounding states, playing small bluegrass festivals. I saw them at one such festival and was able to immediately like their music, something which I can't normally do. I generally have to let things sink in slowly.

This is the 2nd of their 3 albums and is my favorite. Just listen to the track "Love is Pleasing" to sample the kind of spooky, brilliant vocal harmonies this group creates. The instrumentation consists primarily of fiddle, acoustic bass and guitar. On the instrumental songs, the sound is scratchy and raucous. And on the ballads, it blends well with the vocals and provides drifting interludes and trills. This is a great summertime album for enjoying sunny weekend days. Download it here.


Anonymous said...

This isn't relevant to this post but I was wondering if you've ever heard of mimi and richard ferina? Anyway since your blog seems to be named after a jack elliot song and they were in his era, I was wondering if you had any of their albums. Just curious, heres a great song of theres on youtube if you havn't heard it.

Anonymous said...

not jack elliot, bob dylan I don't know why I said that

Anonymous said...

fantastic, buddy. you might dig the biscuit burners or shannon whitworth if you like bg. be good, - phil

Sean said...

Thanks for the record. This is good stuff.

Might I recommend Hope For a Golden Summer:

Thanks, Sean

veljic said...

brilliant album
can you posted more albums from furnace mountain
thanks alexandar/belgrade

Anonymous said...

Thanks a lot, man ! I'm a recent fan (since Fields of Rescue) of this precious band. You're probably the last one to share this music on the web in 2011, so thanks again :-)